Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

Lyles v. Gambino

United States District Court, N.D. Illinois, Eastern Division

June 17, 2019

TONY LYLES Plaintiff,
v.
JOE GAMBINO, ET AL. Defendants.

          MEMORANDUM OPINION AND ORDER

          Jeffrey T. Gilbert United States Magistrate Judge

         This case is before the Court on Defendants' Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings [ECF No. 151] and Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment [ECF No. 153]. For the reasons discussed below, the Court grants in part and denies in part Defendants' Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings. To the extent Defendants' arguments are not rendered moot by the Court's ruling on the Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings, the Court denies Defendants' Motion for Summary Judgment.

         I.

         BACKGROUND

         Plaintiff Tony Lyles, a former pre-trial detainee in Cook County, Illinois, was held at the Cook County Jail from approximately February of 2013 until September of 2015. At four separate court appearances - on July 24, 2013, November 18, 2013, December 19, 2013, and October 16, 2014 - Plaintiff alleges Cook County correctional officers violated his constitutional rights.

         A. Juiy 24, 2013 Incident

         On July 24, 2013, Plaintiff alleges that Officer Michael Seropian used excessive force against him and that Sergeant Joe Gambino and Officer Fitzpatrick Allen were deliberately indifferent to his medical needs. [Plaintiffs Third Amended Complaint, ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 30, 33].[1] According to Plaintiff, after a court proceeding on July 24th, Officer Seropian yanked on his arm while he was handcuffed and threw him against an elevator door, causing injuries to his left shoulder, back, wrist, and neck. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 4-7]. After he was returned to the jail and placed in a holding cell, Plaintiff alleges that he asked Sergeant Gambino and Officer Allen to take him to Cermak Health Services but they refused. [ECF No. 137 ¶ 8].

         The same day, on July 24, 2013, Plaintiff filed a separate grievance and non-grievance request related to the incident. [DSOMF, ECF Nos. 155-4, 155-5]. The grievance was marked with control number 2013x2879 and described an unnamed bailiff making contact with Plaintiffs left shoulder, resulting in pain and injury. [ECF No. 155-4, p. 1-2]. On August 10, 2013, Plaintiff received and signed for a response to grievance 2013x2879. [ECF Nos. 155-4, p. 4; Plaintiffs Response to DSOMF, ECF No. 166 ¶ 14]. On August 14, 2013, the Cook County Department of Corrections ("CCDOC") responded to Plaintiffs non-grievance request, which asked for the identity of the bailiff in courtroom 307 and described Sergeant Gambino's and Officer Allen's conduct. [ECF No. 155-5, p. 6; ECF No. 166 ¶ 20]. Eight days later, on August 22, 2013, Plaintiff was transferred to Kankakee County Jail. [ECF No. 155-3 ¶ 16; PSOMF, ECF No. 167-1 ¶ 4]. CCDOC's response identifying the bailiff involved as Deputy Sheriff Michael Seropian * 10995 was sent to Plaintiff at Kankakee. [ECF No. 155-5, p. 6]. However, due to his transfer, Plaintiff was not able to sign for the response to his non-grievance request. [ECF No. 155-5, p. 6; ECF No. 166 ¶ 21].

         On October 10, 2013, Plaintiff returned to Cook County Jail. [ECF No. 155-3 ¶ 17; ECF No. 167-1 ¶ 13]. At that time, according to CCDOC, he was afforded an additional fourteen days to appeal grievance 2013x2879 and re-submit his non-grievance request as a formal grievance. [ECF No. 155-3 ¶¶ 18, 22], Plaintiff did not appeal grievance 2013x2879, nor did he re-submit his non-grievance request. [ECF No. 155-3 ¶¶ 18, 22; ECF No. 166 ¶ 15].

         B. November 18, 2013 Incident

         On November 18, 2013, Plaintiff attended another court appearance where he alleges Officer Seropian used excessive force against him and Sergeant Gambino was deliberately indifferent to his medical needs. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 30. 33]. Specifically. Plaintiff alleges that Officer Seropian pushed him while leading him out of the courtroom and yanked on his handcuffs, reinjuring his shoulder, back, neck, and wrist. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 11-14]. He further alleges that Sergeant Gambino refused to take him to a doctor, despite his complaints of pain. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 15, 16]. There is no evidence Plaintiff submitted a grievance related to the November 18, 2013 incident. [ECF No. 166 ¶¶ 10, 11].[2]

         C. December 19, 2013 Incident

         At a court appearance on December 19, 2013, Plaintiff alleges that Officer Seropian used excessive force by handcuffing Plaintiff tightly behind his back, causing pain to his wrists and shoulders. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 17, 18, 30]. Plaintiff further claims that Officer Edward Hopkins used excessive force by grabbing Plaintiff from behind and dragging him from the courtroom, causing pain and injury. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 19, 30]. According to Plaintiff, both officers failed to intervene to prevent the injury by the other. [ECF No. 137 ¶ 31]. There is no evidence Plaintiff submitted a grievance related to the December 19, 2013 incident. [ECF No. 166 ¶¶ 10, 11].[3]

         D. October 16, 2014 Incident

         On October 16, 2014, Plaintiff alleges that Officer Hopkins used excessive force in carrying out a judge's order to remove Plaintiff from a courtroom. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 21-27, 30], Plaintiff asserts that as he was led out of the courtroom, Officer Hopkins twice forced him into a seat in the gallery, causing pain to Plaintiffs neck, back, and injured shoulder. [ECF No. 137 ¶¶ 25, 27]. Plaintiff filed a grievance that same day referencing excessive use of force by "Officer Higgins." [ECF No. 155-6]. The grievance was given control number 2014x6354 and processed as an emergency grievance. [ECF No. 155-6, p. 1, 4; ECF No. 166 ¶¶ 25, 26]. On October 23, 2014, Plaintiff received and signed for a response to that grievance, which indicated that the complaint had been directed to the Office of Professional Responsibility ("OPR") for review. [ECF No. 155-6. p. 1, 4; ECF No. 166 ¶¶ 25, 26; ECF No. 155-4, p.3-4]. Plaintiff did not appeal grievance 2014x6354. [ECF No. 155-4 ¶ 27; ECF No. 166 ¶ 27].

         II.

         PROCEDURAL HISTORY

         On February 26, 2014, Plaintiff filed suit alleging improper use of force and deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs by "Tom Dart," "Sergent Gambine," "Officer Allen," and three unknown officers pursuant to 42 U.S.C. § 1983. [ECF No. 1 ]. Plaintiff was allowed to proceed against Sheriff Tom Dart as a nominal defendant for the limited purpose of identifying the officers whose names he did not know. [ECF No. 5].

         On July 20, 2015, Plaintiff filed his first amended complaint, which the Court struck for failure to comply with repeated court orders. [ECF Nos. 37, 43]. Plaintiffs second amended complaint, dated November 3, 2015, was accepted by the Court with some limitation. [ECF Nos. 49, 51, 52]. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 1915 A, the Court permitted Plaintiff to proceed with claims from incidents on July 24, 2013, November 18, 2013, December 19, 2013, and October 16, 2014. [ECF No. 51]. Specifically, the Plaintiff was allowed to proceed against "Officer Michael Seropian" for excessive use of force, failure to intervene, and deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs on July 24, 2013, excessive use of force and failure to intervene on November 18, 2013, and excessive use of force and failure to intervene on December 19, 2013. The Court further permitted Plaintiff to proceed with his claims against "Officer Fitzpatrick Allen" and "Sergeant Joe Gambino" for deliberate indifference to his serious medical needs on July 24, 2013. Finally, the Court allowed Plaintiff to proceed against "Officer Poe Higgins" for excessive use of force and failure to intervene on both December 19, 2013 and October 16, 2014. All claims against Tom Dart and "'Unknown Officers" were dismissed. The court's order further cautioned Plaintiff that allowing the claims to proceed did not preclude Defendants from raising any applicable affirmative defenses, including the statute of limitations. [ECF No. 51, n.2].

         Within a few months, Plaintiff filed a proposed complaint that the Court determined was substantially identical to the second amended complaint discussed above. It was therefore stricken. [ECF Nos. 53, 54]. On February 22, 2016, the Court dismissed "Officer Poe Higgins" from the suit without prejudice, as the summons served on the Cook County Sheriffs Office found no employee by the name of "Officer Poe Higgins." [ECF Nos. 62, 64]. On March 26, 2018, Plaintiff filed his third amended complaint. [ECF No. 137]. It was accepted for the limited purpose of naming "Officer Edward Hopkins" in the place of "Officer Poe I-Iiggins." [ECF No. 136]. On November 28, 2018, Defendants filed a Motion for Judgment on the Pleadings under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(c) [ECF ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.